When it comes to raising a baby, a play yard isn't normally part of the priority shopping list. For young mothers, the first few months of the baby means investing in infant formulas, comfortable and safe clothes, feeding bottles and the recommended vaccinations. While play yards aren't normally on top of mind during his first few months, keep in mind that these are must-do investments as well as soon as you start to bring your baby to your travels and next family get-away. 

Play yards serve as your partners in caring for baby 

Play yards can help provide a secure and safe space for the baby to play around when you are busy or attending to household chores. Play yards are highly portable and mobile, which means you can bring one on your next planned travel. These products are collapsible and easy to set-up that will not require advanced tools or knowledge. The modern play yards have improved compared to their traditional counterparts. Modern play yards are now available in rectangular shapes, and may come with extra features to keep your baby entertained. Some of the popular extras offered by different brands include detachable toy bars, musical toys and blinking lights. Some of these extra are powered by remote control, thus control the baby’s entertainment even if you are busy in the kitchen or the living room. 

Options range from basic to deluxe play yards 

Commercial play yards in the market are available as basic and deluxe play yards. The difference lies in features and of course, cost. If you are budget-conscious, you can always start with a basic play yard that’s lightweight and comes with basic features. Basic play yard starts from $40, and will not feature some of the best extras that can keep your baby entertained. Basic options are often rectangular in shape, highly portable and can fit in the door with mesh protection on all sides. Deluxe play yards are premium options packed with entertainment features. Play yards like Chicco Lullaby LX Playard in Element and Chicco New Lullaby Lx Playard Sedona from Ideal Baby are premium selections that feature entertainment options, music and changing table. 

A few words about play yard safety

Aside from entertainment features, the safety is a critical element that should be considered when shopping. There have been reports about injuries sustained by kids when playing inside the play yard. For safety reasons, it’s important to read first the manufacturer’s instructions and ensure that the play yard has been completely set-up before using it. Any loose pillows, blankets and toys should be removed from the play yard when putting the baby to sleep.